September 3, 2013

NYC builds a newsstand designed to be run by blind workers, then decides to scrap it because it's not theft resistant.

Now they're going to build an new one.
“As part of a major and vital rehabilitation of the Kings County Criminal Court, we are adding a new newsstand and investing to make it accessible,” said a spokesman for the city Department of Design and Construction. The Office of the Criminal Justice Coordinator ordered the DDC to build the stand as part of a $38 million courthouse renovation. City courthouse newsstands are operated by blind workers through a program run by the state Commission for the Blind.
Blind people have traditionally run newsstands, but the safeguard against theft —  a problem at any newsstand — is the heightened sense of morality people feel about cheating the blind.
Said one court source, “Let’s face it. It’s in the lobby of a courtroom, so you might get a few criminals walking by who wouldn’t think twice about stealing from a blind guy.”
You might think NYC should just use the new place and not employ a blind worker, but consider that there is a pre-existing but run-down newsstand in the lobby, run by a 61-year-old blind man who's worked there for 10 years, the design of the new shelves really does facilitate shoplifting, and there are other aspects of the design that aren't suitable for a blind person. The area behind the counter is said to be too small to use a cane or seeing-eye dog.

It sounds almost as though the designer had a secret agenda of ousting the blind. That's a premise I'd explore if I were suing. Things less cheap than lawsuits: 1. building another new newsstand, and 2. eating the cost of shoplifting.

Quite aside from potential litigation, there's the political problem. Here you've got: 1. wasting the taxpayers' money, 2. looking stupid, 3. showing lack of concern for the blind, 4. the embarrassment of a ridiculous crime paradise in the lobby of a criminal courthouse, breeding more and more disrespect for the law among those with the least reason to feel respect.

13 comments:

Paul said...

Ann,

1. wasting the taxpayers' money.

THEY DON'T CARE

2. looking stupid.

THEY DON'T CARE

3. showing lack of concern for the blind,

THEY DON'T CARE.

4. the embarrassment of a ridiculous crime paradise in the lobby of a criminal courthouse, breeding more and more disrespect for the law among those with the least reason to feel respect.

and THEY DON'T CARE.

Why?

Cause 51 percent of the people are so stupid (as in low information voters) that being re-elected is only a matter of picking up a few votes from the dead, ghost, double voters, etc.... to tip the balance.

Hence their opposition to voter ID laws.

prairie wind said...

I did not know it was traditional for blind people to run newsstands.

If stealing newspapers = crime paradise, we should be celebrating the diminished goals of criminals.

Peter said...

Yes, but, the most widely used "newsstand" today is a smartphone or tablet.

chrisnavin.com said...

There's got to be a one-eyed man around here somewhere.

Sam L. said...

NYC is not the home of the best and brightest. Q.E.D.

FleetUSA said...

I am frequently amazed at the number of building projects which may look sleek but are not functional, e.g. the Spanish building without elevators, this newsstand, etc.

It seems architects and clients don't seem to communicate very well and attention to detail is seriously lacking.

Crunchy Frog said...

The main purpose of the newsstand seems to be a jobs program for blind people. It is not a profit center. If someone steals a magazine or two, it is not going to impact the central function of making a 61-year old blind guy feel better about himself.

Cedarford said...

chrisnavin - Perhaps if Diogenes was around now, he would be searching for not honest men, but a way to brand the dishonest ones to make all our searches easier. Even the two-eyed.

For America has devolved into a land of those lawyers in politics who are trained to lie as second nature. Executives that see profit and wealth in destroying the just wages of other citizens from US industries and jobs. Amoral thugs without a microgram of justice in their bones. Parasites trained from infancy to lie to get tens of thousands worth of free entitlements. Democrats and the Left exercising unrestricted class warfare to create a malignant eternal indignation of imagined injustices to further divide races and classes through Jewish Bolshevik tactics.
Unjust taxes, laws made by the powerful and activists that oppress rather than enhance justice and freedom.

The Zimmerman trial was revealing if you watched several days of it and followed commentary. Scumbag prosecutors with no sense of justice, lead by the excretable dirigible Angela Corey, who was installed by dishonest higher level Republican politicians to appease black racists and leftists that cared more more "social justice" a la the Jewish Bolshevik's construct, than real justice. Dishonest reporters. Dishonest prosecution medical examiners. Parents dishonest that they had raised a dangerous, fould up, drug addled thug as a son.
In that morass, a few just people stood out by their uncommoness. Zimmerman himself would have pleased Diogenes as a just man. The 911 dispatcher. The lead cop. The eyewitness who had his life threatened by leftists and black racists that still testified for the accused hispanic the jews at the NY Times tried branding as white. (as if being a white gentile is evil)

Sigivald said...

Is that a Courthouse thing in general?

I ask because around here the County Courthouse has a coffee kiosk run by a blind person.

And that's looking more like tradition than circumstance, in this context...

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Crunchy Frog,

If someone steals a magazine or two, it is not going to impact the central function of making a 61-year old blind guy feel better about himself.

I disagree entirely. The "61-year-old blind guy" is not going to "feel better about himself" if he is constantly confronted with the reality that people are nicking stuff left and right under his very nose. If this kiosk is actually within the courthouse, it needs very discreet cameras and constant recording. It ought not to be difficult to catch the thieving scum who'd steal from a blind man; they probably have to show ID at some point.

Cedarford, I wish you'd give it up. You've managed both to drag the Zimmerman case back in here, where it manifestly doesn't belong; and to drag Jews into the Zimmerman case, where there aren't any. It's silly.

Eric Jablow said...

It isn't just courthouses. I once worked in another type of building where there was a sign at each snack bar and newsstand stating that Federal law mandates they be run by the blind and vision-impaired. Perhaps it's only government buildings of all sorts.

roadgeek said...

The newsstand in our county courthouse in Southeast Texas was run by a blind man. He ran the thing for years and years. As a small child I remember being fascinated by his eyes that didn't see; they just sort of stared off into space at nothing.

He didn't have too much of a theft problem. Small town atmosphere, and lots of LEO at the courthouse. Even the criminals liked the guy.

Trashhauler said...

If NYC is building the newsstand, two questions come to mind: (1) Why? and (2) Does the city share in the profits?